U.S. Embassy and National Museum to Unveil Goodwill Moon Rock

Released on June 15, 2018

Representatives of the U.S. Embassy and the National Museum on Monday will unveil a new museum display that features a rock collected by U.S. astronauts from the moon. The moon rock was donated to Cambodia in 1973 and is one of the “goodwill” samples of moon rocks collected as part of the Apollo 17 mission in December 1972.

The moon rock display will be part of an upcoming centenary anniversary at the National Museum where the museum will highlight different aspects of its collection. The centenary anniversary is being organized in partnership with the École française d’Extrême-Orient (EFEO).

After six months of research, the Embassy was able to find the history of the lunar sample. This will be the first time the moon rock will be displayed with the detailed explanation and background. The moon rock was donated to Cambodia by American Ambassador Emory Swank along with a letter from President Nixon to Cambodian National Education Minister H.E. Dr. Keo Sangkim. The letter, in part, stated: “If people of many nations can act together to achieve the dreams of humanity in space, then surely we can act together to accompany humanity’s dream of peace here on earth.”

The U.S. Embassy has prioritized Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) outreach and programs in order to further Cambodia’s development. We hope this display will inspire young people to pursue a STEM career.

The ceremony will take place at 10 a.m., Monday, June 18, at the National Museum.

Members of the media who wish to cover the event are required to register with the U.S. Embassy Public Affairs Section via telephone at 023-728 492 or by e-mail at ChanC@state.gov.